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Man who carried out sexual assaults on women in Nairn jailed for two years at Inverness Sheriff Court

By Staff Reporter

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Inverness Sheriff Court.
Inverness Sheriff Court.

Portuguese man Christiano Ferreira was convicted of sexually assaulting women in Nairn after a jury trial earlier this year.

Ferreira, whose home is now in France, has been remanded since April 1.

Solicitor advocate Bill Adam told Sheriff Margaret Neilson that Ferreira maintained his position of innocence regarding the offences although he acknowledged some of his behaviour had been "inappropriate".

The married father-of-two was convicted of five of six charges against him during a trial which lasted four days.

Jurors heard that Ferreira would repeatedly grab the bottoms of his victims, who cannot be named for legal reasons, and try to kiss or cuddle them, all without their consent.

One young woman described how she was locked in a cupboard and then sexually assaulted by Ferreira.

After the incident, she said, she phoned her boyfriend in a distressed state and told him what had happened.

The man, who also cannot be identified for legal reasons, said: “She was very upset, crying.

“She said that Christiano touched her under her trousers.

“I said if you don’t report it, I will.”

Ferreira insisted that the act was consensual.

He said he and the woman had fondled each other’s private parts on July 5, 2015.

Having denied the incident took place at all when questioned about it by police he claimed this was because he had been worried about his wife finding out what he had done.

Another woman told the court she was a target of Ferreira’s unwanted attention on numerous occasions between March and July 2015.

She toldjurors he squeezed her bum quite a lot of times.

“He tried to kiss me and on another occasion... he pushed up against me and said something like ‘the things I would do to you.’”

She added: “He used to laugh and I always got angry.”

A third victim, aged 24, said: “There were a few incidents where he inappropriately touched me, grabbing my bottom several times saying that he wanted to be with me and not his wife.

“He would put his arms around me to cuddle me.

“There was no reason for it.”

All the guilty verdicts were reached by majority but the jury were unanimous in finding Ferreira not guilty of a charge of assaulting a fifth woman by seizing her by the body and pulling her towards him.

Ferreira had one previous conviction of a domestic nature.

Mr Adam said he was regarded as a low risk of re-offending and he was finding it difficult being incarcerated which had affected him both physically, by putting on weight, and mentally.

He said, however, he accepted custody was the only disposal open to the court for the accused.

Sheriff Neilson placed Ferreira on the Sex Offenders' Register and sentenced him to a total of two years imprisonment backdated to April when he was remanded.

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